First impressions and examination. It's a smaller unit than some photos seem to indicated. It's about the same size as the other optics in this unit's class. It's heavier, feels more "solid" than others as well. At the 230 dollar price this unit is in the same class as the Bushnell Trophy, Vortex Strikefire, and the like. Quality wise, this unit seems to be on par. The unit, thanks to the more substantial build and mounting system does indeed seem to be the better choice for a combat optic. The rubberized coating at least dresses it for the part.
Looking at the unit from the front, you can see the aiming point. Small, and less visible than the others, but it is visible. In the dark and looking at it, even from a distance, it's visible. This isn't a huge problem, especially for a home defense or sporting application... but don't get this if you are going to deploy on a tour of duty. Every other application, it would be just fine.
The unit has a couple interesting things that set it apart from the competition. Yes, it's a few bucks more, but look what you get. 1000 hours of run time. Better than most optics in the class. An auto shut off, which many don't... the Strikefire does. The Bushnell doesn't. Which means you could leave a unit on and come back to a dead optic. That's not cool. I like the auto shut off. The built on mount. I like that... the Bushnell has it too, but the Vortex doesn't. Able to Co-Witness, yes, but the irons are a little higher in the field of view than I'd like, but just fine and totally workable. The Auto Adjust Mode. Nothing else in the class has this. Set it to auto and it controls the brightness. So you don't have to keep playing with it. That's a clear win right there. And the use of common AAA batteries. Another clear win. AAA's are cheap and plenty, and if you want, shell out for those nice Lithium Platinums like I use... I suspect the battery life will be much better.
So, to sum this up on my first impressions, it looks like the Lucid is the optic of choice at this class grade. Because of the exterior toughness, battery, and that auto adjust feature, it's winner.
I'll be testing this on a couple different weapons. One will be a 5.56 Carbine, and the other will be a shotgun loaded with slugs.